"Krieg um die Geschichte"

Die Schulbuch-Kontroverse in Südkorea

  • Hannes B. Mosler (Autor/in)


The latest controversy on schoolbooks in Korea broke out in spring 2013 when Kyohak Publishing Co. submitted its reactionary revisionist textbook for history classes at high schools to the authorities for approval. That the textbook was officially approved by the Ministry of Education despite the fact that it contained an enormous amount of errors in grammar, orthography, facts, and widely accepted interpretations of historic events has led many to suspect a connection to President Park's conservative interpretation of history. This article analyzes the background of this "war over history" by shedding light on the schoolbook's contested contents and on the arguments for and against it, on the maneuvering of the authorities, and on education policy change regarding the textbook publishing system and school curricula.